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J Med Virol. 1997 Jul;52(3):301-8.

Fulminant demyelinating encephalomyelitis associated with productive HHV-6 infection in an immunocompetent adult.

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Department of Pathology, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Torrance 90509, USA.


Human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6), the etiologic agent of roseola in young children, has been reported to be detectable in the brain of many neurologically normal adults, although regional localization to plaques of multiple sclerosis has also been demonstrated. Large amounts of this virus were present in multifocal demyelinating white matter lesions of fulminant encephalomyelitis with seizures in a 21-year-old woman with normal immune parameters. Brain biopsy after 3 weeks of neurologic deterioration revealed a viral etiology by light and electron microscopy; the virus was identified as HHV-6 by immunohistochemistry and by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification in biopsy and autopsy specimens.

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